– Darkness Ablaze
August 16, 2020
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Turbo Patch (SSH – Darkness Ablaze 172/189, 200/189) takes 13th-place in our countdown; let’s see why. Right away, there is a big drawback. No, not being a Trainer-Item; even in metagames with strong Item-lock, it is still probably the best kind of Trainer to be, because there’s not restriction on how many you may play in a turn. It is that it requires a coin flip and if you get “tails”, it does nothing. When you flip “heads”, however, you to attach a basic Energy card to one of your Basic Pokémon excluding Pokémon-GX. Though it may not seem like it at a glance, this is quite good. Even with an expected failure rate of 50%, even with no guarantees that any copies of Turbo Patch will work in a given game, its easy-to-use Energy acceleration that works with most Pokémon. Well, most when we ignore specifics like the metagame, at least.
One does need to remember that, even if all four copies work, it amounts to just four extra Energies attached. If your deck needs more, look to something more substantial. Turbo Patch is enough to help prep several single-Energy attackers, to ready a few double Energy attackers, or to go for broke with one really big attacker. Maybe all at once, or maybe over several turns. Some may worry, since the Energy has to come from your discard pile, but that’s one of the best places to snag it. It isn’t like you have to rely on just Pokémon being KO’d, retreating, or attack requirements to get Energy into your discard pile; Professor’s Research and Quick Ball are in most competitive decks.
Turbo Patch would be amazing if it could attach Special Energy cards, which are notably more difficult to recycle than basic Energy cards. It would be noticeably better if it could work with Pokémon of any Stage, and if it also worked with Pokémon-GX, but as far as restrictions go, these are relatively mild right now. After all, most evolutions evolve from a Basic Pokémon, so you can at least try to use Turbo Patch before evolving. Pokémon-GX are an important part of the metagame, but not only are they the “old” gimmick (Pokémon V being the new), but some Pokémon-GX are evolutions, so that same workaround? It still applies: attach to a non-GX Basic, then evolve into a Pokémon-GX!
Still, if it can’t work with TAG TEAM Pokémon, if it fails around half the time, and if you only get a few uses from maxing out your count, is Turbo Patch worth it? Probably. Max Elixir was a previous, popular form of Energy acceleration. It was also a Trainer-Item that only worked with basic Energy cards and Basic Pokémon, and it had the further restriction of only attaching to your Benched Pokémon. It looked at the top six cards of your deck and let you attach one basic Energy from there… and if there were none, the card failed. Unless your deck was low enough you knew what was left in the six or less cards, or you used another effect to look ahead or stack the top of your deck, you were still gambling with Max Elixir. Turbo Patch just more blatant with that aspect, and is unlikely to gain any worthwhile combos to reduce or completely mitigate the risk.
I expect Item-lock to make a major comeback and be a significant part of the Standard Format’s metagame by the time Turbo Patch is legal. I don’t have recent results for Expanded, but Item-lock is often a big part of its metagame, so it seems even more likely there, and that does hurt Turbo Patch… but as an Item, you really can try to spam it on your first turn, even if you’re going first and don’t get to use a Supporter. A bigger concern is that rivals like Max Elixir are still in this cardpool, and if you require Energy acceleration beyond four of those, you’re talking about enough deck slots to consider something Pokémon-based.
Turbo Patch is a must-run for the Limited Format with the usual exception: Mulligan decks built around a single Basic Pokémon V have few ways of getting basic Energy cards into the discard pile. The two new Theme Decks – Galarian Darmanitan and Galarian Sirfetch’d – each contain two copies of Turbo Patch. With the PTCGO being too much for my old tablet and my time at my desktop usually focused on typing, I haven’t put the new Theme Decks through their paces yet, but even if the rest of them end up being bad, Turbo Patch should still be pretty good… unless you get “tails” both times.
Turbo Patch most likely isn’t a card to fueling massive, Energy-hungry attackers turn after turn, but it gives many attackers a nice, quick boost. Even with the coin flip, even with my expectations of more Item-lock, even with its other drawbacks, I think Turbo Patch has a lot going for it… yet I almost left it off my countdown! For my final revision, however, I not only added it, but as my 7th-place pick! Yet I’m not upset with it showing up this low; like the card itself, I go between extremes of thinking this card is amazing or thinking it is on the meh side.
Did not have this on my personal list.
This card seems so restrictive and unreliable. You need to flip heads in order for Turbo Patch to do something. And even worse, you can’t attach it to a Pokemon-GX, but you can attach it to your Basic Pokemon-V as well as other regular single prize Basic Pokemon. And unlike other “patch” item cards like Aqua/Dark Patch, it can actually be attached to your Active Pokemon. When it does work, it gives you extra energy attachment so that you could go from zero to attacking.
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